Hundreds of British Airways flights delayed or cancelled after IT meltdown

Tom Belger
Finance and policy reporter
Thousands of British Airways passengers were stranded as IT problems hit the company. Photo: PA

Thousands of British Airways passengers are facing disruption to travel after an IT meltdown forced the company to delay or cancel hundreds of flights.

BA said 81 flights due to leave or land in Heathrow airport were cancelled, with another 10 to and from Gatwick also cancelled because of the issues with its check-in system.

More than 200 other flights were delayed, with some more than five hours behind schedule after the UK airline was hit by a “systems issue.”

Several passengers shared their frustration on social media, with one user claiming it was “chaos” as they posted a picture of a long queue reportedly at Heathrow’s Terminal 5.

Another suggested check-in queues were so long they ran out of the door of the airport.

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Nicola Small, a journalist at the Sunday Mirror, tweeted: “My sister is stranded at Toulouse airport at end of honeymoon because of BA cancelled flight and will miss connection home to Hong Kong. They haven't been offered hotel. Please can you help?

“They've been rebooked on flight to London tomorrow morning, but will miss connection to Hong Kong (with Cathay) and have had to pay £400 rebooking that flight.”

Wayne Turner, who said he had a BA flight booked to Vienna from Heathrow, tweeted: “Was about to walk out the door, then received text of cancellation. Managed to get one tomorrow. Lost a day of hols!”

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British Airways is allowing short-haul passengers from Heathrow, Gatwick and London City airports to re-book for another day between Thursday and next Tuesday.

A spokesman said: “We are working as quickly as possible to resolve a systems issue which has resulted in some short-haul cancellations and delays from London airports.

“A number of flights continue to operate but we are advising customers to check for the latest flight information before coming to the airport.”

The airline is reported to have back-up and manual systems, which are being used as it seeks to deal with the disruption.